Jindal signs ethics exemption for former senator

Gov. Bobby Jindal has agreed to carve out a special ethics exemption for a former state senator, allowing the ex-lawmaker to lobby the Legislature even though his brother is currently in the state Senate.

Jindal’s office announced the bill signing this weekend, and it became law immediately.

House Bill 459 doesn’t name who it was designed to help. But its sponsor, Democratic Rep. Jeff Arnold, of New Orleans, has said it was written for former state Sen. Francis Heitmeier, whose brother, David, is a state senator. Both Heitmeiers are Democrats.

Francis Heitmeier represents the New Orleans Baton Rouge Steamship Pilots Association, a river pilots organization.

State Sen. David Heitmeier, of New Orleans, didn’t vote on the measure when the bill was up for consideration.